Dropping Gumballs On Luke Wilson
Closed 1h 15m
Dropping Gumballs On Luke Wilson
75

Dropping Gumballs On Luke Wilson NYC Reviews and Tickets

75%
(57 Reviews)
Positive
77%
Mixed
18%
Negative
5%
Members say
Funny, Entertaining, Clever, Quirky, Great acting

About the Show

Working Theater's new play is based on a true, little-known story about the making of an iconic TV commercial in which a legendary film director puts a movie star's life in the hands of a very jittery props guy. 

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Member Reviews (57)

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80
Great staging, Great writing, Delightful, Clever, Absorbing

See it if you'd like a compact, LOL exploration of power abuse /corporate greed. Very well acted/staged (w/projectns) Based on true, fascinating story

Don't see it if you only like old-fashioned theater. DG is grounded in truth, but has flights of fancy. Relevant theme of absol power corruption. Engaging!

70
Slow, Preachy, Great staging, Uneven, Entertaining

See it if It's entertaining enough but uneven overall. It started well and funny and creative.

Don't see it if you don't want to be preached by a child of privilege​. Read more

Critic Reviews (16)

The New York Times
June 19th, 2019

“’Dropping Gumballs’ stretches Ackerman’s anecdote over a very thin 75 minutes...But the play does have a delicious villain in its Morris, played by Wohl as a tyrannical perfectionist who thrills at his own gravitas...As written, Wilson is a cartoon, but at least he has charisma, which our hero, Rob, and his thinly drawn colleagues sorely lack. That’s not the actors’ doing; the trouble is in a script that wants to honor the characters’ toil but can’t locate the drama in it.”
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New Yorker
June 21st, 2019

“Directed with a gently surreal touch by Rebeck, the actors impersonating the celebrities are delightful: Sale’s Wilson is paunchy and aloof, and Wohl’s Morris is an offhand megalomaniac. But it’s the crew members whose perspectives make the premise of this show so weirdly engrossing. Ackerman is interested in big ideas which is one of the best jokes here: to load such heavy stuff onto such an absurd frame.”
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BroadwayWorld
June 18th, 2019

“’Dropping Gumballs on Luke Wilson’ ricochets plenty of candy and themes, but in its 75 minutes, this thin workplace-humor production doesn't give us enough to chew on...Watching an avalanche of gumballs bounce off of Luke Wilson's head was funny in a slapstick way. That being said, the concept of a human pachinko machine repurposed from a 30-second telecom commercial was not enough to sustain my emotional interest in this show.”
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Lighting & Sound America
June 27th, 2019

"The playwright Theresa Rebeck makes her New York directorial debut here and she handles both sides of the play -- the show business shenanigans and clash of ideas -- with authority, putting a well-cast troupe through their paces and never letting the action go slack...The production benefits from a design that adds verisimilitude to these amusingly dubious proceedings."
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TheaterScene.net
June 24th, 2019

"A decade has passed since the much-criticized AT&T vs. Verizon commercials starring Luke Wilson took to the airwaves, but playwright Rob Ackerman has chosen to bubble up their essence into his whimsical, off-the-wall new play, 'Dropping Gumballs on Luke Wilson,' helmed by Theresa Rebeck in her New York directorial debut."
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Theater Pizzazz
June 18th, 2019

"Seems to cram in every labor-related issue that might appear in a packed 75 minutes...But ‘Dropping Gumballs on Luke Wilson’ lacks effortless flow. While the outpouring of emotion in the script must have been derived from Ackerman’s years as the Prop Master for SNL Film Unit, what is remembered is the humor, and the desire to turn the document of a day into an interactive experience...Funny, yet tragic...A must see for theater folks, with friends in the film and television industry.”
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Front Row Center
June 19th, 2019

"I laughed because this conflict is so familiar to me having been an actor on commercial sets and it is certainly too late to cry. My husband, my date, laughed because surely this is just a fun exaggeration, right?...The casting of this show is deliciously perfect. I’m sucked in and the familiar anxiety arises within me because the characters are true to life...Get your skates on. Go see this one before it disappears."
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T
June 21st, 2019

"One of the many problems that plagues this production is that there are almost as many platitudes strewn across the stage as gumballs, some more prevalent than others. The play does not have enough substance...Issues are established but never resolved leaving a void that is created by ignorance...Rebeck keeps the action moving...but is undertaking turning a one trick pony into a three-ring circus...The characters are too shallow and once the gumballs drop, the play is over."
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Broadway Blog
June 19th, 2019

"Theresa Rebeck, best known for her critically acclaimed plays, makes her praiseworthy New York theatrical directorial debut. Her cast is pitch-perfect and she fully captures the satirical nature that the work demands...Rebeck keeps Ackerman’s hilarious script moving at a spritely pace. Her uniformly talented cast is one to admire...A hugely amusing and thought-provoking tale that truly pops."
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Theatre's Leiter Side
June 19th, 2019

"A slim, semi-absurdist, farce inspired by events surrounding the making of an AT&T commercial…While the play is sometimes cute, sometimes quirky, sometimes funny, and more times not, it remains consistently watchable thanks to the direction of Rebeck…Even with the occasional shifts from comic realism to more surrealistic moments, the basic situation begins to seem like an overextended sketch…Doesn't offer that much to chew on but, like a gumball, tastes good while it lasts."
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Times Square Chronicles
June 22nd, 2019

“The play is directed by Theresa Rebeck in her NY directorial debut and it is superb. She gets the most out of this talented group of actors, all who are at the top of their game...Ackerman’s dialogue is snide, insightful and whip smart. I also look forward to seeing more of his work...’Dropping Gumballs on Luke Wilson’ will make you think, challenge your opinions and make you glad theatre is alive and well. This show shines its light on hard facts and things that normally stay unspoken.”
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Off Off Online
June 19th, 2019

“An excellent production...Rebeck deftly balances the comic lunacy with the play’s mounting moral stakes. Rebeck and the performers effectively mine the laughs from the ludicrous circumstances without overselling the characters’ quirkiness...Ackerman’s play is rather sketch-like. The characters, although based on (mostly) actual people, are cartoonish...Still, even if the play does not rise to the level of profundity, in its philosophical pursuits, there is a good deal to chew on.”
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On Stage Blog
June 24th, 2019

"Mr. Ackerman and Ms. Rebeck have built a play that thrives on vacillating between tension and comedy, living somewhere in between the audience’s conscious of comfortable backstage drama and biting political commentary on existing power structures, perfectly suited for the multi-tasking, conscious-raising audiences of America 2019...A skillful sleight of hand, 'Gumballs' is riveting from beginning to end."
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Stage Voices
June 22nd, 2019

"The script, which provides more waffling than a presidential impeachment trial, is indecisive regarding its ending, too...Ackerman wants to present provocation without ever having to stop being clever...Where the evening succeeds, though, is in its timing and brisk pacing–the show is only an hour and fifteen minutes, a one act really, which can deliver on old-fashioned laughs, such as a pie throwing montage."
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T
June 18th, 2019

"A deftly-acted, ingeniously directed, and deliciously meta frolic around the set of an iconic TV commercial...If you’re either Luke Wilson or Erol Morris you might have a problem with this play. Everyone else is in for a treat...If you’re like me and you have a few screws loose in a good way, you’ll appreciate the whimsically offbeat tone Ackerman and Rebeck have created here...Ackerman’s droll script finds unexpected depths in its disturbing account of power in the workplace."
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B
June 20th, 2019

"A play which is true the the vision and mission of the company. Stories reflect a diverse population the working majority, acknowledging their complexity...by creating theater of interest to working people...Ackerman brings the realities of unscrupulous authorities in the work place to our attention in a mode that approaches theater of the absurd...Be prepared to chuckle, but the message here is one which resonates beyond the 'set.'"
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